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Guardian Angels

One day, Yaakov, who lived in South Africa, traveled out of his home city. He had already reached his destination when his car's motor began to make strange noises. He managed to park the car on the side of the road before the motor conked out entirely.

He attempted to restart the motor again and again to no avail. He was located in a deserted industrial zone, where very few cars passed by. He called a service which fixed cars, but he knew they would take a long time to show up.

Yaakov waited and waited, and meanwhile dusk was approaching. He looked at his watch and realized that it wouldn't be safe to wait there anymore. He would have to make his way to the main street and hail a taxi.

The closest main street was an hour and a half away. He would have to hurry so he could reach the main highway before it became dark. Walking in the dark in the deserted areas of this city was extremely dangerous, especially in this particular area where there had been many muggings and murders in the past. Yaakov locked his car and began walking.

As he was walking, Yaakov wondered whether he would ever see his car again. He knew the criminals in the area would not let an abandoned car sit for long. As he was pondering his car's fate, he looked up and saw a giant black man approaching him from a distance with a menacing look of hatred on his face. Yaakov's blood froze, and he began shaking from fear. Visions of the violent acts which had taken place in this location in the past flashed before his eyes. He made an intuitive decision to continue walking rather than turning around and fleeing, realizing that he would not be able to outrun the huge man. The distance between them was too close, and he did want not to provoke the man if he had no intention of harming him.

The black man drew closer, with clenched fists. The dark street was completely empty. Yaakov continued walking, his whole body shaking from fear. He knew that a Jew is never alone, and he began mumbling pessukim of Tehillim. "My help comes from Hashem, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot stumble, He will not slumber, your Guard. Hashem is your Guard, Hashem is your shelter at your right hand...Hashem will guard you from all evil." "Hashem is my refuge.. no evil will befall you, and a plague will not approach your tent. Because He will command His angels to guard you in all your ways."

The man approached closer, and stared at Yaakov with a murderous gaze. But....he passed without touching Yaakov. Yaakov breathed heavily and continued reciting Tehillim. Finally he reached the end of the street and began running towards the main street. Within a few minutes he was in a taxi on the way home. He arrived home, still pale and trembling from his ordeal, and related to his family what he had gone through.

The next morning, Yaakov opened the newspaper and his blood froze once again. A picture of the black man from the night before stared back at him from the front page. The front headline announced a murder which had taken place the previous evening in the city's industrial zone. The black man in the picture was the main suspect, and the police were asking anyone who recognized the man or had seen him in the area where the murder took place to come forward to testify.

Yaakov began trembling again as he looked at the picture. It was definitely the man he had seen the night before, and for some reason had been spared from his murderous hands. Later that morning, he went to the police station to testify. His testimony was taken very seriously, and the fact that his car was found in the area was proof of his testimony. It was determined that the man in custody was the actual murderer. After all the details were recorded, Yaakov had a request for the policemen before he returned home. He asked them to ask the murderer why he had continued on his way when he had passed him, and refrained from harming him, only to harm someone else. The police officers and Yaakov approached the cell, and the officers opened the door. They asked the murderer, "Do you recognize this man?" The murderer answered, "I think so. Wasn't this the Jew who I saw last night walking in the industrial zone?"

The police officers said, "Why didn't you harm him? It was totally deserted there."

The murderer answered, "If we had been alone, I wouldn't have hesitated to harm a Jew, but we weren't alone. Two armed guards were walking with him, one on the right and one on the left. How could I have gotten close to him?"

(This story was told over by a Rosh Mesivta in Ohr Somayach in Johannesburg, South Africa, who had previously lived in Cape Town where he has heard the story from "Yaakov" himself.)

(Niflosav Livnei Adam)

From Revach.net

This story never happened.

Rav Ehrman, perhaps you meant Revach.net, as opposed to .com?

indeed - net! Thanks

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About me

  • I'm Rabbi Ally Ehrman
  • From Old City Jerusalem, Israel
  • I am a Rebbe in Yeshivat Netiv Aryeh.
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